Facing a $75 million budget shortfall, King County Metro Transit may be forced to change or cut five routes that stop near Seattle Pacific’s campus.
Metro could alter 107 routes and cut 74 routes throughout the county. The transit agency said on their website that revenue from sales tax fell sharply in 2008 and hasn’t recovered since.
Metro said on their website that half of their revenue comes from sales tax.
“We run out of bus passes at least once every shift,” said junior Jordan Conrad, who works at the Unicom desk loaning out bus passes to students.
To counter the budget shortfall, Metro has raised fares every year since 2008. They’ve also cut routes in recent years — like route 17 that used to take students Downtown via Nickerson.
In 2011, the King County Council approved a temporary $25 million provision for Metro, but that ends in 2014.
Metro said if new funding doesn’t come through by June, the cuts would start in the fall.
Route 31 would be cut under the proposed changes. It runs from University District to Magnolia and stops by SPU on Third Avenue West and West Nickerson Street.
Route 62 would also be cut. It also stops on West Nickerson and goes from Ballard to Downtown Seattle.
Route 29 would still run but would be altered to not go by SPU. It currently stops at Third Avenue West and W.est Cremona Street and goes from Downtown Seattle to Ballard through Queen Anne.
Route 32 would operate more often under the proposed cuts to accommodate the eliminated Route 31. It runs a similar route to the current 31 bus and picks up on the West Nickerson Street stop by SPU.
Route 13 would combine with Route 2 and run more often to accommodate the merge. Route 13 runs from Third Avenue West and West Cremona Street near the SPU campus to Madrona Park through Downtown.
Metro’s website has a full list of cuts and changes along with information on why the cuts are happening and what they mean for King County bus riders.
Sophomore Jordan Guitang rides the bus at least three times a week.
“I’ll pretty much have to start driving to school if my bus gets cut, which will cost a lot of money,” Guitang said.
Junior Aya Aljanabi said she rides the 31,32 and 40 routes to get to class three times a week.
“It would be really hard if my buses got cut,” she said.